Be Bashful Bikini: the début pattern from At First Blush

I have some exciting news to share with you this week: my lovely friend Kelly of Sewing Unaffiliated just released the first pattern from her new brand, At First Blush Patterns! Be Bashful is a pretty pair of bikini-style knickers and I got to sew them up in advance of release, so I wanted to share them with you today, the day Be Bashful hits the virtual shelves.

First of all let me tell you about Kelly. You can read about her in her own words, but I wanted to add a few words of my own. Kelly is everything I love about the sewing community: passionate, generous, kind, and talented. She left a career working in the fashion industry to pursue her dreams, and for as long as I’ve known her she has been learning pattern drafting with a focus on lingerie and activewear. I first “met” Kelly a few days after I had opened my Instagram account last year. We were both doing the “Sew April” challenge and we started commenting on each other’s posts. It was the first proper connection I made, and has evolved over the months outside of Instagram and blogs. I’m proud to call Kelly my friend, and I’m thrilled to be able to share my Be Bashful Bikini with you today:

Be Bashful Bikini by At First Blush Patterns

It’s always a bit scary when a friend or family member wants your honest opinion on something they’ve done that’s important to them. What if you don’t like it? How do you tell them? Fortunately that wasn’t an issue here. I knew Kelly’s work would be careful and professional because I know how hard she’s been working towards this. But there was one big thing I was crossing my fingers for when I opened the instruction file: I hoped that the gusset would have a clean finish, because that’s one of things I look for in a knickers pattern. I held my breath, read the instructions, and there it was: a clean gusset finish. Hurrah!!

I love the branding Kelly has chosen: it’s clear she’s thought about what she wants her new company to represent. It’s feminine and understated, as you can tell from the name she chose for her brand and for her first pattern.

Subtle pinks and greys make up Kelly’s chosen palette. Image taken from

The construction of Be Bashful is straightforward: first you attach the front and back pieces to the gusset and gusset lining, so that when you lay your panties out flat, they look like this:

Excuse the lighting: I started making these in the evening, so the photos were taken in artificial light!

Next you sew the side seams and then cut your three lengths of elastic (which are the circumference of the opening minus 2 inches), sew the ends of the elastic together to make a circle, then attach the elastic circles to the waist and leg openings.

Be Bashful before elastic

The instructions are clear and concise, and there was no difficulty at all in the method. The elastic is evenly attached, and cinches the pattern pieces in to make a snug-fitting bikini.

I started out with the waistband, and then once I’d sewn the elastic on, I realised that having carefully put a burgundy thread in my top reel and a white thread in my bobbin to match the fabric and lace respectively, I’d got them the wrong way round and my burgundy stitching would be visible on the lace inside. Not that it matters, it’s just that I’d gone to all that trouble only to get it the wrong way round! Plus there’s a bit on the top right where the stitching is uneven. That was when I knew it was time to call it a night and go to bed…

Wrong colour thread! Wonky stitches! Go to bed!!

So the next day I attached the elastic to the leg openings, topstitched my elastic down, and did the final finishings to the garment.


It looks pretty, right? But I bet you want to know whether it’s comfy too… so I’m happy to confirm that it is! As you can tell from the pictures, it’s a high-leg pattern with a low rise, and the butt coverage is enough to stop it from (how can I say this politely?) verging into wedgie territory (there’s just no nice way to say that but you need to know it, right?!)

I made my Be Bashful in a cotton jersey, but there are plenty of other recommended fabrics (just make sure that if you use a synthetic fabric, you do the gusset lining in cotton or other breathable jersey).

To find out more about Be Bashful you can read the launch post, which contains instructions on how to download the pattern. So join me in wishing Kelly every success in her new adventure: Kelly, I’m so happy and excited for you, and I hope you will have the success you so richly deserve.

Image taken from

Click image to go straight to Kelly’s online store

13 thoughts on “Be Bashful Bikini: the début pattern from At First Blush

  1. Kelly

    Helen you are one amazing lady!! I’m so happy you posted a gram with pink camo all that time ago in April of last year. The conversation hasn’t stopped! I am truly honored by your post and your kind words. I am beyond thrilled that you had a good experience with the pattern (especially the wedgie territory reference LOL!! I don’t want to be responsible for ladies having that type of problem hahaha!!). On top of it all your Be Bashful turned out so beautiful! Thank you SO MUCH!!! You are an absolute treasure! 🙂

    1. valentineandstitch Post author

      Haha, yes, those pink camo leggings were where it all began! I will have that pattern sitting on the computer, I never did anything with it! So many patterns, so little time 😉 It was a pleasure to do the post, and to try out your first pattern. I’m honoured to be a part of your adventure, and I hope it will be all you wish for 😘😘

      1. Kelly

        Hey maybe they served their purpose as an IG photo lol! Let our pattern adventures continue! So happy to go through this venture with your support! 😊💕😊

        1. valentineandstitch Post author

          Absolutely! Yes, that photo was serendipity!! Though one day I really should make the leggings for my daughter 😂 Here’s to many more shared adventures 🤗

  2. Hélène

    Your new bikinis do look very pretty! What a nice post about sewing friendship and collaboration. Bravo to Kelly and good luck to her new pattern!

    1. valentineandstitch Post author

      Thanks so much Hélène. There are still so many things about the online world I find difficult, but the people it has brought into my life are just amazing.

    2. Kelly

      Thank you Hélène! Your well wishes mean a lot to me! 💕😊 And isn’t Helen just the best?! 😄 I’m so grateful for her!!

  3. Diane G

    Your Be Bashfuls are really lovely! Isn’t it wonderful news about Kelly’s venture? I aready popped across to her blog and left a comment. I wish Kelly all the best.

    1. valentineandstitch Post author

      Thanks Diane! I used one of my favourite fabrics in honour of Be Bashful’s release 😄 Yes, very exciting news, I hope it’s the start of great things for her!

  4. Paula Lansdownr

    These are so pretty Helen & love the support you are showing for your friend. They are fabulous Fancy Pants . Another gorgeous post.
    Love Paula xx

  5. Sew Sarah Smith

    Ah this is typical you isn’t it, lovely to the core! Great pants…one day I’ll set aside some time to make these with all the offcuts I keep accruing and fail to throw out!! Xxxx


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